Team Stars and Stripes suffered a 24-12 loss to the Tec
Monterrey All-Stars despite a rousing fourth quarter comeback
attempt to overturn a 17-point deficit in the Tazon de Estrellas at
the Tec de Monterrey Campus Estado de Mexico.
Trailing 17-0 in the final quarter and starting with the ball at
their own 29-yard line, Team Stars & Stripes went to the air to
move the ball downfield and the passing game paid dividends as
quarterback Mike Isgro (Delaware Valley College) moved the chains
First Isgro hit wideout Riley Curry (Trinity University) for a
22-yard gain and then went long to Patrick O'Connor
(Dickinson College) to eat up 45 yards, taking the
ball to the six-yard mark.
Another flag backed the Americans up 15 yards, but Isgro
reclaimed ten yards with a pass to Orlando Webb (North Carolina
Wesleyan College) before hitting O'Connor for a touchdown. A missed
extra point attempt by running back and stand in kicker Jake Parke
(Augustana College) left coach Manlove's team trailing by 11 points
with 8.26 to play.
Defensive back Corry Stewart (Hanover College) then recovered a
fumble at the Tec 20 to continue the revival.
Quarterback Aaron Fanthorpe (North Central) rushed for five
yards, found O'Connor for ten more and then hit Steve Austin
(Fitchburg State College) for a five-yard touchdown on third down
with the clock down to 5.48 to play. The two-point pass attempt
failed, leaving Team Stars & Stripes down 17-12.
Tec added another score with 1.22 remaining to go 24-12 ahead
and then Rodrigo Esbobar intercepted quarterback Fanthorpe with a
second on the clock and the Americans only inches from pay
Defensively and on special teams the visitors impressed early
on, producing a blocked field goal and interception to shut out the
more productive home team offense.
The Americans put together their most productive drive of the
first half leading into the break. Quarterback Kyle Paulson (Univ.
Wisconsin-Au Claire) hit receiver Curry for a 23-yard gain and with
head coach Bill Manlove regularly switching his signal callers,
Isgro produced a 23-yard pass to tight end Brett Schreiner (Lebanon
Valley College) to take the ball down to the Tec six-yard line.
The officials threw a flag at the conclusion of the play to move
the ball back 15 yards for an apparent unnecessary roughness
infringement. With the clock ticking down on the half, Tec
Monterrey defensive back Javier Gonzalez produced a timely third
down sack to back Stars & Stripes up 10 further yards from the
end zone. An attempted fourth down conversion came up empty,
leaving the visitors shut out at the halftime break.
Team Stars & Stripes again faltered, going three and out on
three third quarter possessions and Tec took advantage by opening
the gap to 17 unanswered points.
After the visitors reduced the deficit to five points, Salazar
found Jorge Balli for 52 yards in the air on a time-consuming drive
that ended with Reyes breaching the end zone on first and inches
with only 1.22 available for Team Stars & Stripes to make up 12
Their chances looked good as Fanthorpe sought out Austin and O'Connor, each for 15-yard gains. He then went to Austin again to take the ball to the one-yard mark with a second to play after a 17-yard catch before an interception ended the contest.